There are a lot of reasons why you may fall in love with a good friend and want to start a romantic relationship. 

Before you start developing more than a friendship you may want to know the best way to determine if a romance is good for your relationship or a deadly decision for your friendship.

We have listed some suggestions to get you to the first date of many

Countdown to first date success

5. Flirt and have fun

This is the easiest way to start bringing "more than friendship" into your relationship.  Let your friend know she is desirable and interesting.  

4. Be alone 

Try to get some alone time with your friend to have the chance to get to know her better when she is just with you.  Don't be afraid to make eye contact and utilize the power of touch.  Don't be handsy, but don't be hands-off either; know the difference.  

3. Be careful with awkward situations

If you go to the extreme, just know that your friend might start feeling uncomfortable.  Take your time and use common sense about when things start to feel awkward.  If that happens, back off a bit.  It may not mean she doesn't have romantic feelings for you; she just may not have thought about it before. 

Give it some time.  If she starts to avoid your calls or texts, she may be telling you she doesn't want to be romantic, but you may still be able to reinitiate your friendship after awhile.  

2. Pay attention

The best way to know if a friendship is ready to move forward towards a romantic relationship is to pay attention and really get to know your friend.  What does she like?  Does she talk about liking other guys?  Is she open to a relationship right now?  Find out what she thinks of you.  Don't be afraid to ask.  You're friends and you don't need to lay a bunch of hints or mess up your friendship.  You don't have to confess to having feelings for her right away, just find out if you are her type.  If not, then stay friends if it won't make you sad to be attracted to someone who is not attracted to you.

1. First date after a long friendship

So, you both made eye contact or perhaps shared a kiss.  Now, you're ready to go on the first date.  You know each other and know what the other person likes.  Take the initiative and plan a date that will be memorable for a lifetime.  Friends make the greatest lifelong marriage partners.  So, don't make it a "hookup" unless you want to ruin your friendship and make things really, really awkward for both of you.

Instead, if you want to pursue more than friendship, think about this person as someone in which you want a long-term relationship.  Make lasting memories.  You may feel intimate with this person sooner than past relationships since you have already gotten to know her as a friend.  If you have very strong feelings for her, then the risk will be worth it.

Who pays

If you made the first move or were the one to ask her on the date, then you should plan it and offer to pay.  Since you are both friends and probably used to going Dutch, it may be a little bit of a discussion about who pays.  Don't let it get weird, but if one person pays, know that it does move your relationship a bit out of the friend stage, so insisting wouldn't be bad.  Let her know she can pick up the tab on your second date if she in uncomfortable with you paying for the first.

Where to go

You are at an extreme advantage when planning the first date after a long friendship.  You should know a great deal about the person and be able to make your plans around what both of you like.  

Your date should be an established step "beyond friendship".  So, if you go to the movies a lot, spend time at the local pub or enjoy Hulu® and a bowl of popcorn as a usual activity, make this date different.  Just don't forget her likes and dislikes.  Show her you know what she's looking for in a guy and don't be shy.  This doesn't mean you should overdo it.  That might scare her off.  But, don't make the date super casual either.  Try something new that you think she would like.  It could be a concert, art show, rock climbing or dinner that includes some unique cuisine.  

How to behave

Ok.  This is a slippery slope. So read this part a couple times, carefully.  You have invited your friend to go on a date.  You have established your intentions and she knows you are asking her to go on a date as "more than a friend".  Do NOT come on too strong.  It's like a dance.  Don't start to Samba if she wants to waltz.  It doesn't mean she isn't interested, but the date can be a total disaster, as well as damage your friendship, just because one person is moving too fast and expecting too much.  

Friendship and beyond

The upside is that you feel totally comfortable around your date.  The downside is that you feel totally comfortable around your date.  Part of the excitement of a new relationship is meeting someone new.  It can be intense, scary, exciting and dark.  The darkness is the unknown.  It's the mysterious attraction to the parts of someone you want to know more about.  

An established friendship is usually pretty comfortable; but, you can still be excited about the unknown.  This will be the romantic side of your relationship you two have never explored. 

It'll be exciting to understand her "mystery", a chance to look at her differently, see and understand her in a way you may have not thought about before or been able to act on.  Intimacy starts in getting to know someone on a different level of your relationship.  Take it slow.  She means a lot to you and you should let her know by being patient, curious and behaving like a gentleman.


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